Coconut Rice

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes

    6 to 8


Appears in

The Ghana Cookbook

By Fran Osseo-Asare and Barbara Baëta

Published 2015

  • About

Cooking rice with coconut milk and/or coconut cream elevates humble rice to something special. This is a foolproof way to cook a quantity of rice in the oven, but works equally well made in a rice cooker for the family or a small group of guests. A convenient alternative is to use a canned unsweetened coconut milk. An electric rice cooker is my preferred way to cook rice, especially when guests are around, since it frees up the stovetop and needs no attention while cooking.


  • 3 cups white rice (any type, preferably long grain, such as basmati or jasmine)
  • cups coconut milk with cream, canned or homemade (directions for making coconut milk)
  • 3½ to 4 cups water (a little more if cooking on the stovetop)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (optional)


Directions for rice-cooker

Rinse the rice, if necessary. Put all the ingredients in the rice cooker, cover, turn on and leave until cooked. Many rice cookers will keep the rice warm for up to 2 hours without burning it.

Directions for stovetop

Rinse the rice, if necessary. Place all ingredients in a large cooking pot. Turn the heat on to high and bring to a boil. Immediately turn the heat down to low and cover, making sure the rice does not boil over as the heat lowers. Allow to simmer about 20 minutes, or until cooked. Avoid lifting the lid too soon, but add a little water near the end if the rice becomes too dry before the grains are tender.

To serve

Fluff rice with a fork before serving. Serve with any stew as a side dish.


  • To dress the rice up, increase the proportion of coconut milk and/or coconut cream; add ½ to 1 teaspoon of turmeric or a few strands of saffron to give it a lovely golden tint and add a delicate flavor
  • Substitute brown rice, but increase the water and cooking times.